Well, the blog has really taken a hit lately. The truth is, there just isn't that much going on around here. Okay, that's not entirely true. Recently, while Scott was away a few nights, I figured out how to stream Netflix movies instantly through the his XBOX. It's revolutionized things in our household...come to think of it, maybe that's why I've neglected the blog lately.
This weekend I'm headed to Birmingham for a few nights with the family. I promise to bring home new and exciting things to blog about when I get back. In the meantime, you will have to make do with another post about our trip this past summer....don't worry. There's only three days left in the trip after this post!
So...our last day in Venice. We had crammed in all the main tourist attractions and all of our favorite things in the first two days, so on the last day we had a relatively "free" day to see some new things. Scott had decided that he wanted to see the "other side" of the island. We headed out to get to Lido, the part of Venice that doesn't belong to the tourists. It's actually much like a European Seaside, where European vacationers come to go to the beach. There's hotels and beach resorts a 5 minute boat ride from St. Mark's Square. Many of the native Venetians live on Lido because it's significantly cheaper to live on this side of the island. They simply ride the boat over to the main island for work every morning.
It took us awhile to figure out which boat to take, but we finally did and it was well worth it in our opinion. We hiked straight across the little island to the beach.
We saw how Europeans do beach vacations and since it was very hot and we had no bathing suits, we started back to the boat. The island has no historical siginificance and it doesn't even get a passing reference in our Rick Steves book, but it was interesting to see a modern version of ancient Venice.
There are plenty of canals in Lido....but no gondoliers. All of the romance in Venice is found on the main island.
We stopped at a lovely little cafe on our way back to the bus stop. Lunch was fabulous and our waiter even quoted some lines from Back to the Future. We also discovered that Lido has some pretty good gelato.
This was the view from the boat stop. Since tourism is the main source of revenue in Venice, most people that live on Lido bike to the boat stop and ride across the canal to work.
After Lido we rode the boat to the more "gritty" side of Venice. Ever heard of Murano glass? It's made in Venice, on the opposite side of the island from the singing gondoliers and museums.
Rick Steves was right. There is no romance on the Murano side of the island but was so interesting. It was quiet, less touristy, and had shop after shop selling the world famous glass.
It's more colorful too. Since these homes aren't "historical" and protected by law, the locals can paint them any color they like.
After heading back to the main part of the island, we walked around St. Mark's Square enjoying our last few moments in our favorite city. We got engaged in St. Mark's Square so that was the last place we visited before hopping on the nigh train to Paris.
Next we hopped on this to spend the longest and most awkward night of our lives riding to Paris.
But more on that later.